More than 40 years after it rolled off the production line, Aston Martin’s Bulldog supercar will finally get its chance to crack the 200mph barrier, with marque veteran Darren Turner at the wheel.
Aston first unveiled the Bulldog back in 1979, with the first test chassis being completed for 1980. The wedge-shaped Bulldog was designed by William Towns and intended to be a technical showcase for the brand as the fastest production car ever made at that point, with a top speed of just over 200mph predicted.
Aston had planned to build as many as 25 of the 5.3-litre V8 machines, but the project was curtailed when Victor Gauntlett took over as Aston chairman and deemed the project too costly.
Only one car was built, and it did achieve 192mph during a test at MIRA before being sold to a Middle Eastern collector for £130,000 in 1984, and then spending time in American hands. The Bulldog is now back in the UK, where its new owner has commissioned a full 18-month nut-and-bolt rebuild through Classic Motor Cars in Bridgnorth – with the restoration being overseen by Victor Gauntlett’s son, Richard.
Once it’s completed, Turner will attempt to set the speed record that never was, and take the sole Bulldog to 200mph.
Gauntlett said: “The car is well on its way to being restored and CMC will have it running by the end of the year. A critical part of this was finding the right driver, somebody who could get involved with the final elements of the project such as set-up and testing.”
Turner added: “I had heard of the Bulldog from within Aston Martin, and when I got asked to join this project I didn’t have to think twice. I’m looking forward to being part of the story of bringing the Bulldog back to life and finally achieving what it set out to do all those years ago.”